What an embarrassing exchange for a man who wants to be the Attorney General of the United States. These people seem to come in with great resumes, only to be shrunk to mere mouthpieces once the Bush policy is poured into their heads.

Senator
Dodd
came out against Mukasey. So did Senator
Obama
.

“We urgently need an Attorney General who will check the vast and unconstrained
executive powers that have been accumulated under the Bush-Cheney Administration.
Judge Mukasey has failed to send a clear signal that he understands the legal
and moral issues that are at stake for our country, and so I cannot support
him.

“No nominee for Attorney General should need a second chance to oppose
torture and the unnecessary violation of civil liberties. It’s time to stop
the political parsing and to close the legal loopholes. Waterboarding is torture,
and so are other ‘enhanced interrogation techniques’ like ‘head-slapping’
and ‘extreme temperatures.’ It’s time to reclaim our values and reaffirm our
Constitution.”

Clinton came out today as well.

The Attorney General is the chief defender of the rule of law in our country.
After Alberto Gonzales’s troubled tenure, we cannot send a signal that the
next Attorney General in any way condones torture or believes that the President
is unconstrained by law. When we leave any doubt about our nation’s
policy on torture, we send a terrible message to the rest of the world. Judge
Mukasey has been given ample opportunity – both at his confirmation
hearings and in his subsequent submission to the Judiciary Committee –
to clarify his answers and categorically oppose the unacceptable interrogation
techniques employed by this Administration. His failure to do so leaves me
no choice but to oppose his nomination.

Senator
Hillary Clinton

Below is John Edwards’ statement against Mukasey, which adds a nice touch: the Spanish inquisition. That’s a picture for you.

“George Bush’s political appointees at the Justice Department have twisted the law to justify waterboarding and other interrogation techniques that have long been considered torture. Now the man who is supposed to clean up the Justice Department — Judge Michael Mukasey — says he does not know whether waterboarding is torture or not. What more information does he need? Waterboarding was used in the Spanish inquisition and considered a war crime in World War II.